Former North American dash champion Dan Noble, who won that title in 2011 with 773 victories, accumulated 112 points over his eight drives on Tuesday afternoon (Jan. 8) to capture the 2019 edition of Miami Valley Raceway’s annual $25,000 North America Drivers Championship. He follows in the footsteps of Doug McNair and Trace Tetrick, who won the $10,000 first prize in the initial two competitions.
Noble trailed Brett Miller by eight points with just one race remaining. The 36-year-old native of nearby Xenia, Ohio, managed a second place finish with Rockin Hot Lady to earn 20 valuable points. Miller, unfortunately, finished last in the final event and finished with 100 points—good for second place in the final standings and $5000 in prize money.
Drew Monti, the leading driver on the Buffalo/Batavia circuit, finished a strong third (95 points) to win a $3000 bonus payday. Travis Henry (87) from Ontario won $2000 for his fourth place finish, followed by Randy Tharps (86, $1500), 2015 World Drivers Championship winner Dexter Dunn (85, $1250), Jeremy Smith (76, $1000), Joe Bonjiorno (67, $750), Aaron Merriman (53, $500) and Anthony Napolitano (39).
Noble is the first local reinsman to win the NADC at Miami Valley. The son of the late, great Ohio Hall Of Famer Chip Noble grew up about 25 miles from Miami Valley and is the fourth generation Noble to occupy the same barn at the Xenia Fairgrounds over the years. A winner of 5,465 races, Noble lists a 1:47.4 career fastest mile behind Pet Rock, winning the prestigious Kaltenbach Award as the leading Ohio Sires Stakes driver of the year, and his national dash championship as his most memorable highlights.
“Winning this championship, especially so close to home, ranks right up there with those other highlight moments though,” exclaimed a jubilant Noble on his way back from the winner’s circle presentation to the paddock.
Noble’s 112 points came on the strength of one win, one place finish, two show finishes, two fourths, a sixth and a seventh place finish over the eight races with ten-horse fields.
The eight winners during the Championship Round were: The Optimist (Brett Miller, $6.20), Desires Lady (Dan Noble, $18.40), Twin B Honour (Joe Bonjiorno, $3.60), Cool Like That (Drew Monti, $14.80), One Sweet Woman (Randy Tharps, $12.80), E R Hilary (Travis Henry, $10.40), Colonys Best (Dexter Dunn, $28.80) and Northernflightlady (Tharps, $11.00).
Following the winner’s circle presentation, Noble was rushed back to the paddock where he had to literally run inside to get a whip and run to jump on the sulky as the horses entered the track for his final mount of the day in a $4000 overnight event. In typical Noble fashion, he won again with Crombie A, returning $6.80 to his faithful at the windows.